Monday, December 10, 2012

Cheesy Chicken and Broccoli Pillows

Life has been so busy for me. Going back to work has really exhausted me, both physically and mentally. I'm ready for bed around 3pm, but not really in bed until after 11pm and up again at 6am. In between all that, besides work, is piano lessons, choir practice, kids homework, baths and reading time. Grocery shopping has been moved to the back burner and I don't even think about dinner until I'm driving home most nights!

I know a lot of you out there are busy moms and dads too! And we all are looking for something that can double up to make multiple meals, be easy to make, and still be somewhat healthy.

Bring on the Cheesy Chicken and Broccoli Pillows! I've always made these really simple, with just chicken, cream cheese and green onions, but decided to kick it up a notch (Emeril would be so proud) and add in some vegetables and a yummy sauce. Don't knock the cream of chicken soup yet, though. To be honest, "cream of" soups aren't my favorite, but they are great when you are trying to cook something quickly and I keep some in my pantry all the time just in case.

The best part? After you make your eight "pillows" you have enough sauce to save for another night. I love it over rice. Serve with a side of salad and you have another super easy dinner to throw together.

Yum! This recipe makes 8 large, flaky, filling pillows.

Start off by cooking your chicken. Make sure it's cubed small enough that you can wrap it in the pillow. Add your seasonings...

And your thawed broccoli florets. Go for the florets, not the broccoli cuts, since the cuts are mostly stem pieces.

Cream together your cream of chicken soup, cream cheese and cheddar. Add in the chicken/broccoli mixture and combine.

Take your crescent rolls and press the seams of two triangles together to form four rectangles per can of rolls. Make sure they are sealed well so your pillows stay closed. Put a good amount of filling on the bottom half....

And press to seal. You can use a fork. I just use my fingers and it works fine.

Brush with melted butter and top with Panko crumbs (or seasoned bread crumbs).

Once they are golden brown they are done. Crispy and flaky and buttery on the outside, super yummy on the inside.

Look at that! My kids proclaimed this dinner a winner, and that's all I need to hear!

Cheesy Chicken and Broccoli Pillows
by Girls in Aprons

2 cups chicken, chopped (about 2 breasts)
3 Tbsp vegetable oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp Italian seasoning
1/2 tsp pepper
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
1 package frozen broccoli florets, thawed

1 can cream of chicken soup
1- 8 oz block cream cheese, room temperature
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese

2 cans refrigerated crescent rolls

1/4 cup butter (1/2 stick), melted
Panko (or seasoned bread crumbs), for topping

Preheat oven to 375.

On medium high heat, heat the vegetable oil. Cook the chicken and seasonings until chicken is cooked through. Add the garlic and cook 1 minute longer. Add the thawed broccoli.

Meanwhile, combine the cream of chicken soup and cream cheese until smooth. Stir in shredded cheddar. Add the chicken and broccoli mixture and stir until well combined.

Unroll the crescent dough and press two triangles together, pressing the seams well to make eight rectangles. Put a good amount of filling on the bottom half of each crescent rectangle (about 1/4-1/3 cup). Fold the top half over and seal the edges, making sure the filling stays inside. Brush each top with melted butter and sprinkle with Panko crumbs. Place on an ungreased cookie sheet and bake 15-18 minutes, or until golden brown.

If you have extra filling (and you most likely will) you can either make more pillows if you need to feed a crowd, just get another can of cresent rolls. And it's amazing over rice for another dinner option! My kids loved it that way, and I loved having another dinner waiting in the wings!

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